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B.C. therapists to try ecstasy to treat trauma patients

September 1st, 2009 · 17 Comments

When I was doing research earlier this year into the death of Paul Haden, I ended up finding out more about the push in some circles to have entheogens (psychoactive drugs that are used to produce spiritual experiences) given some credit for their traditional uses in religious practices and as treatments for medical or psychiatric conditions.

Along the way, I heard that two Vancouver therapists were hoping to conduct a small study in treating post-traumatic stress disorders with limited doses of ecstacy. According to Andrew Feldmar, they’ve now received approval from Health Canada, as you can read in my story here.

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  • Jen

    What an interesting idea.
    From my experience with X, I know that it tends to blow the refuse out of the old pipes in the brain.
    Seems to allow new energy to move in and around.

    I’m no scientist, but I think it could work.
    thanks for the info.

    Guess I’ll stay tuned for the haters now. : )

  • Len B

    For anyone who thinks ecstasy (Jen) is a solution to any problem, perhaps they should visit the following web site and drop a few X into the giant eyeball.

    http://www.xperiment.ca/

    Ridiculous.

  • I don’t think anyone is saying it is a solution, but rather a tool that can facilitate a solution.

    There’s a reason MDMA is being suggested for the use outlined in the article. It works, just as other drugs such as LSD, magic mushrooms, peyote, et al have positive uses too, and have been an important part of many cultures’ spiritual practices for millenia.

  • Blaffergassted

    Alchemy is alive and well:
    “There’s gold in them there pills!”

  • Jen

    Len. you are hater number 1.
    Your response is very knee jerk. ever tried it?
    get back to me when you do.

  • Len B

    Jen,

    Like I said, ridiculous.

    My drug use is no one’s business either. Why do you assume anyone thinking X is bad – is-or-was a non-user?

    There are plenty of recovering addicts out there who believe people like you are the problem.

    Next, from your use of the word “hater”, you’re either too young to know better or old enough to grow up already.

    Clearly your maturity is showing is bounds.

  • “My drug use is no one’s business either.”

    You made it everyone’s business when you decided to offer an opinion on the topic. If you haven’t tried it, then you quite literally don’t know what you’re talking about it (no offence intended) and your assessment of its potential as a therapeutic aid is handicapped by that shortfall. Considering the inevitable backlash such a program inevitably creates, my opinion is that there must be some real value to the idea if health professionals are pushing for it.

  • Jen

    Recovering addicts now? You are all over the map.

    Maybe you should head back to the animated drug taking eye for fun. Who puts out that nonsense? Bible thumping self righteous anti drug drones?
    Sounds like at least some open minded health professionals are open minded enough to try something different. Thank GOD.
    Maybe someone can benefit. I have benefitted from many of life’s experiences.

    You are the ridiculous one. What makes you so rigid? Those little blue pills?
    I’m nobody’s problem.
    Peace out hater.

  • Stephanie

    I don’t think it’s fair to say that someone who hasn’t done MDMA is somehow unqualified to speak about its therapeutic potential. Following that to its silly conclusion, psychiatrists can’t speak to the efficacy of antidepressants if they haven’t taken them, etc. So no, he didn’t make his drug use anyone’s business. That’s ridiculous.

    And I would suspect that none of the commenters who have done MDMA have done so in a therapeutic context. I’d hesitate to jump to the conclusion that recreational use imparts any particular wisdom about therapeutic use.

    That said, I look forward to the outcome of the study. I’ve read about some of the efforts to use MDMA in therapy and the results have always looked interesting to me.

  • I didn’t say he was unqualified. I said his assessment of its potential is handicapped by not having taken it. To follow your point to its silly conclusion Stephanie, I can tell you what durian tastes like by reading about it in a book.

    Maybe following things to their silly conclusion is not such a good idea.

  • Stephanie

    Perhaps I missed some subtle meaning in your statement “if you haven’t tried it, then you quite literally don’t know what you’re talking about”, then.

    If you want to object to his knee-jerk response to the study, absolutely. The manner you’ve chosen is absurd and equally knee-jerk.

    I expect that someone would be able to consider the potential of MDMA in a therapeutic context by reading the existing literature. Or are you suggesting that the appropriate approach for the study authors would have been to pick up a cap at Organix and say, “wow, maybe we should get Health Canada to fund this”?

  • “if you haven’t tried it, then you quite literally don’t know what you’re talking about”

    is exactly what I meant. However, there’s no judgement or attempt to score points in that statement. I think you think I’m trying to cut Len down to size, but I’m just pointing out the reality that sometimes you have to try something to know what it’s really like.

    And frankly, would it be such a bad idea if psychiatrists had to sample the substances they prescribe? Who’s gonna trust a vegetarian butcher?

  • “Or are you suggesting that the appropriate approach for the study authors would have been to pick up a cap at Organix and say, “wow, maybe we should get Health Canada to fund this”?”

    That’s a huge red herring there.

  • Stephanie

    And again: what I’m saying is that the totally amazing time you had when that cutie with the dreads got you loaded at Velofusion bears little or no relationship to the experience of a study participant with PTSD using MDMA in a clinical context. I think you’re jumping to self-aggrandizing conclusions if you think if gives you any special knowledge whatsoever about the therapeutic potential of the drug.

    Which brings us back to the fact that your original shot at Len was a load of hooey.

    And with that I’m out. I’m not interested in another tedious Keam thread.

  • Shane

    Ecstasy is well worth the risk for someone who is suffering from trauma or even severe depression.

    I love Canada (sometimes).

  • Haha. That’s awesome. Velo-cuties. I wish.

    Reread my earlier post Stephanie.

    “my opinion is that there must be some real value to the idea if health professionals are pushing for it.”

    Pretty sure I’m not the poster jumping to (erroneous) conclusions here.

    Of course someone who has tried it would be able to bring their experience to bear on the issue and would be able to extrapolate how their experience might relate to a more clinical approach. That’s not special knowledge or self-aggrandizement on my part, just a little common sense.

    What’s tedious are people who can’t resist boring personal attacks just because someone disagrees with one of their points.

  • Jen

    I really feel like Len would benefit from some X use.
    Stephanie might lose some anger too.